Spa-Francorchamp F1 ...Advice Wanted


truckerathome

Link Posted 14/08/2015 - 02:29
I am off to Belgium for the F1 Grand Prix next weekend (as a spectator only) and will be taking my camera with me in the hope that I can get a few decent shots.
Can anyone help with any pointers or advice as to the best spectator positions around the track where I will be able to get some decent pictures and also possible lens focal length requirements that would be needed. I know it is a long circuit and goes into the woods so am hoping there will be a few places away from the main grandstands to get some good shots.
I have done some research but most of the info seems to be fairly old so was wondering if anyone has any recent info they can share.
Cheers
Martin
Last Edited by truckerathome on 14/08/2015 - 02:31

richandfleur

Link Posted 14/08/2015 - 04:48
truckerathome wrote:
I am off to Belgium for the F1 Grand Prix next weekend (as a spectator only)

Didn't secure an F1 drive then?

simonarron

Link Posted 14/08/2015 - 07:42
Hi Martin

The first bit of advice is to pack stout boots and waterproofs, as well as summer gear. I've been to Spa 30-odd times and conditions can morph from bright sunshine to downpour in little more than the blink of an eye. Take a camera cover, too.

If you have a general admission ticket, I'd cross to the centre of the circuit and venture up towards Les Combes and the following downhill right-hander, which I call Rivage but now seems to have been renamed Bruxelles (click on the central map on this link). You'd probably have to shoot through the fence at Les Combes, to obtain something like the angle below, which was taken at 270mm in 2011. At that point on the circuit, though, spectators often assemble piles of logs, use small ladders or else sit on a mate's shoulders to shoot over the fence.



At Rivage/Bruxelles, the top of the inside spectator banking is much higher than the debris fencing and lots of photographers gather there (always a useful clue) to take unimpeded pan shots - I'm guessing that 200-300mm would be about right, but can't be sure because I haven't tried it. The circuit is also at its highest between these two sections, so you might be able to find a convenient perch to compose a landscape shot that embraces most of southern Belgium - something like this, perhaps (taken at 100mm last year). Note that I had the very unfair advantage of a media tabard, so can't be certain about what might be available from behind the fence. There are some elevated vantage points in this area, though, and you'll struggle to find one of those elsewhere (unless you happen to have a seat in one of the Eau Rouge grandstands).



It's a very, very long uphill walk to Les Combes - so carrying ladders, big lenses and stuff might be a pain - and as with most circuits tall debris fences present the main obstacle. I'm not sure whether I'll be there - I haven't missed the Belgian GP since 1990, but this year it clashes with other things and I might be at Mallory Park instead! If you have further questions about specifics, feel free to drop me a PM.

Hope you enjoy the trip.

Cheers,
Simon
Last Edited by simonarron on 14/08/2015 - 07:44

Helpful

truckerathome

Link Posted 16/08/2015 - 12:14
richandfleur wrote:
truckerathome wrote:
I am off to Belgium for the F1 Grand Prix next weekend (as a spectator only)

Didn't secure an F1 drive then?

My age and my preference for driving at a sedately 60-70 mph, sadly went against me

truckerathome

Link Posted 16/08/2015 - 12:23
Thanks Simon, plenty of info there to help. Will send you a PM if anything else comes to mind .... Much appreciated

Martin

billtinkoblenz

Link Posted 16/08/2015 - 20:16
Will look out for another Pentax owner at the weekend - my first visit also - thanks for the input.

jeallen01

Link Posted 16/08/2015 - 22:50
truckerathome wrote:
[quote:3496ace15f="richandfleur"]

My age and my preference for driving at a sedately 60-70 mph, sadly went against me

Preference is still 70-80 (and I think the way the car has been tuned, then that is almost the most economical). Below 70 I "go to sleep" on an open road (and I'm 67, going closely on 68 - but then, I've been driving on motorways since I was in my teens, and did a bit of rallying in my 20's, and, YES, I have my eyes checked VERY regularly and carefully!).

I'll be watching the Belgian GP on Sunday, or later on if we go out - might be going to the Shoreham airshow!
K-3 II, K-3 and a K-70 from SRS (having now relegated the K-30 /"K-50" to a backup body), & some Sigma and Pentax lenses (and a lot of old 35mm gear!)
Last Edited by jeallen01 on 16/08/2015 - 22:54
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